In a nutshell, betting is when you wager something of value (usually money) on the outcome of a sporting event or other occurrence. The bettor (also known as the ‘player’ in some circles) is typically looking for a return on investment (ROI) and/or for entertainment.
In the case of sports betting, the bettor is typically looking to make a profit (or at least break even). In the case of casino games such as poker and blackjack, the bettor is looking for entertainment and/or a better chance of winning.
Why Bother With Exchange Betting?
Exchange betting is a fascinating alternative to the traditional way of doing things, particularly when it comes to sports betting. With traditional sports betting, the bettor makes a wager either in person or online, and then waits for the outcome of the game.
With exchange betting, the bettor doesn’t have to wait for the game to be completed to know the outcome – the bettor can get the result immediately.
One of the biggest drawcards of exchange betting (particularly when it comes to sports betting) is the ability to place bets on events that are currently in progress. If you’re lucky, you might catch a game or even a half-game while you’re enjoying lunch or a drink at a sports bar or restaurant.
How Does It Work?
When you make an exchange bet, the betting exchange (such as Betfair) acts as an agent between you and the sports book or casino where the match / event is taking place. The betting exchange collects the money from both parties and distributes the funds according to the terms of the bet. So, in the case of a bet between two bookmakers, the betting exchange manages the bet and distributes the winnings according to the terms of the contract.
Advantages And Disadvantages
Advantages of exchange betting:
- You can place bets on events that are currently in progress
- You can bet on multiple sports simultaneously (using a betting exchange app like My5sport for example)
- You don’t have to commit to placing a bet on a particular team – if the score is 3-0 in favor of Team A, you don’t have to worry about whether or not they will win the game. With traditional betting, you would have to make that commitment
- You get the outcome of the game almost immediately (assuming there’s some kind of electronic notification system in place)
- You don’t have to wait for the match to be over before taking action – with traditional betting, you would have to wait until the game ended to see if your team won or lost
- It’s usually easier to get into (depending on where you are located)
- You don’t have to worry about getting stuck with losing tickets (again, depending on how the betting exchange handles your bet)
Disadvantages of exchange betting:
- You have to trust the sports book or casino you’re doing business with – if they manipulate the results, you could end up losing money
- Some sports books / casinos don’t offer decent odds on certain events (for example, a soccer match involving one of the top European Leagues – the English Premier League or Bundesliga)
- You’re essentially taking on more risk – you’re gambling, after all.
- There’s more paperwork involved – you have to fill in a lot of forms and collect a lot of documentation to prove you’re a legit sports bettor
Are There Any Risks Involved?
Depending on where you live and/or where the event / game you’re betting on takes place, there could be certain risks involved – you have to do your research before committing.
From a US point of view, in-person betting is illegal (unless you’re in a casino), and all sports betting (whether done online or offline) is technically against the law. Federal authorities including the Justice Department are actively pursuing legal action against sports betting websites. As a result, many bookmakers will not accept US customers.
The Future Of Sports Betting
Forbes has predicted that 2021 will be the ‘year of the athlete-owner’ as more and more professional sports teams are realizing the financial and marketing potential of their players. The article states that currently, there are more than 500 registered athlete-owners in the United States, and that the number is expected to reach 1,500 in the next few years.
In addition to owning a team, many top athletes are also choosing to invest in individual games through the use of sports wagering platforms. So, in 2022 and beyond, you will likely see more and more athletes adopting a ‘hodgepodge’ approach to sports betting where they compete in multiple games throughout the year – either through their own teams or as an investor in various tournaments (think: the 2022 World Cup). In this manner, they can maximize their exposure and make the most of their immense talents while minimizing their financial risk.
The future of sports betting certainly looks interesting, and it’s easy to see why more and more people are getting on board. Just remember: the fun doesn’t have to end there – if you want to keep betting but don’t want to take the plunge on your own, you can always look into the many different types of betting pools available on the web.